Its cable channel has been on the air for over a year. It has netted some of the best-known names in digital journalism. The New York Times has devoted weighty political columns to its lead anchor.
But there’s been a tentativeness to Fusion, the corporate “Frankenbaby” of ABC and Univision. It’s not on most American TVs yet. Some of its star hires have been silent for a while. And—from my conversations with friends and colleagues—most people don’t have a clear sense of what it exactly is yet.
That may soon change.
On Tuesday, Fusion will debut a new website, new online verticals, and new work from its considerable bench of digital journalists. It has had a website for about a year, as long as it has had a cable channel, and its digital talent has occasionally published a post. But Tuesday is the re-imagining.
“In many ways, we’re pressing the start button,” Jane Spencer, Fusion’s editor-in-chief, told me. “It’s a very basic first step.”
The new website is a “simple, clean place” to put text, images, video, and interactives, she said. As Fusion finds its footing, they've opted to “experiment in public.”
The new site will launch with six sections, their topics a somewhat idiosyncratic spin on what has become a standard web-newsy taxonomy. A “News” section, led by NBCNews.com’s former editorial director, will cover topics like climate change and social unrest. A “Justice” heading will encompass social activism, cultural change, and policing. “Pop & Culture” will focus on modern-day pop culture through many lenses, including race and gender; a health-focused “Sex & Life” will focus on body stuff. The site’s technology-focused vertical is “Real Future,” edited by Atlantic contributing editor Alexis Madrigal (who was previously our Technology editor and hired me). Its opening-day stories dwell on how prisoners use technology and the security of popular chat app Slack.